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Thank You, Masked Man
We get letters, we get email, we get wine and flowers...
Hit the white board to win the job.
Date: December 10, 2001

Dear Nick,

I'm interviewing for Marketing Director positions, and found myself talking about the past -- what I had done. After all, if I'd done it before, I could do it again.

Then I read your book -- and secured another interview. This time, I used the time to start doing the job. Haven't got the job yet, but I'm the leading candidate.

The traditional model is awkward because the interviewer focuses on what you did for your previous employer, rather than how your skills would be put to use for them. It's not their fault; it's simply the accepted model.

Further, what you're doing for your current employer is never exactly what your prospect needs, and you create a gap which puts your candidacy at risk.

Your "do the job" model mitigates that risk. Rather than wasting time "selling yourself", you start solving their problem immediately. After all, it's not about you -- it's about them. They did not bring you in to solve your problem of getting a job -- they brought you in to see if you could solve their problem.

So, I asked this prospective employer a series of questions about what they want to achieve in the next 30 days, 60 days, 90 days. I began translating these objectives into a marketing strategy and plan, using the whiteboard in their conference room.

I attached a more refined plan to my follow-up letter. They could see that I would come in and be productive immediately.


Richard Fouts

P.S. -- This is a great model for salespeople as well. After all, what is a job interview? A sales call! Also, I carry a couple of spare whiteboard markers in my pocket -- then I'm not searching for pens, or even worse, discovering a dry pen.



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